UC Berkeley SkyDeck, the global startup accelerator of the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), along with Cariplo Factory, one of the most important Italian innovation hubs specialising in entrepreneurship programs, and Lendlease, a global real estate and investment group, launched SkyDeck Europe, based in Milano (Italy). Startups from all over Europe will be able to leverage the expertise and resources of SkyDeck’s extensive network of advisors, mentors, VCs, and corporations as they grow their businesses in the European startup ecosystem.
SkyDeck Europe set up its program at the newly developed MIND Milano Innovation District, a $4,5 billion innovation district in the northern Italian city of Milan, which is considered to have the biggest startup ecosystem in the country. SkyDeck Europe was created with the support of two Italian stakeholders: the philanthropic organisation Fondazione Cariplo and the Government of the Lombardy Region.
The 6-month acceleration program includes a first quarter curated by the Berkeley SkyDeck team (offered both in-person and virtually) and a second quarter by the Cariplo Factory team. The second quarter of the program takes place at MIND and offers the resources and networks of some of the best Italian Universities, selected through a tender by the Cariplo Foundation. The Universities that will take part in the program are Milan Polytechnic University, University of Milan, IULM Free University of Languages and Communication, University of Eastern Piedmont "Amedeo Avogadro", University of Insubria, University Institute of Higher Studies of Pavia, and the University of Bergamo.
Among the benefits of the acceleration program, each startup receives an investment of €145,000 from Lendlease’s private investment fund and has the opportunity to present their project to a network of international investors during a Demo Day at the end of the program.